Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences (RGUHS) at Karnataka, is the foremost Health Science University in India, established at Bangalore by the Government of Karnataka. On April 21, 2017, AmritaCREATE (Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham) was given the unique opportunity to conduct a live demonstration of MedSim in the presence of the Vice Chancellor, Dr. K. S. Ravindranath. The team worked hand-in-hand with Dr. S. S. Harsoor, Registrar of RGUHS, in conducting this demo. The event also included about 30 principals, medical superintendents, heads of departments, etc., from various medical colleges in Karnataka.
MEDSIM medical simulation software was developed to give medical students the opportunity to visualize, learn, practice and experience a variety of medical skills and procedures. This e-learning platform, developed by Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham in association with CDAC Trivandrum, under a research grant from MeitY (Government of India), replicates clinical scenarios through 2D and 3D animations.
The honorable Vice Chancellor opened the workshop. Dr. S. S. Harsoor spoke about the need for medical simulation to supplement learning for students. He felt that many available medical tools such as mannikins were too expensive to be used, especially in Government colleges. Dr. Prema Nedungadi, Director of AmritaCREATE, presented different aspects of MedSim in detail, which was followed by a live demo of MedSim software by Dr. Romita Shine. The program ended with a Q&A session with the audience.
The audience was extremely attentive and interested in the MedSim software and felt that this was definitely a valuable tool in medical education. Many were aware about the availability of mannikin-based technology, but were unable to consider the practicability of including such technology into their medical skill labs due to the staggering costs. Since MedSim is freely available to the medical community, they felt that there was a good chance for utilizing this software as an assessment and learning module. One of the doctors who taught Physiology to her students felt that modules such as central nervous system examination could be used during early medical education to teach students. Software such as MedSim helps students to visualize the various theoretical aspects of medicine. The participants felt that including MedSim in the curriculum could positively impact medical education, especially in those colleges were clinical cases were scarce. Dr. K. S. Somaskhekar (Cardiologist), Principal of Basaveshwara Medical College And Hospital, said that after using MedSim, medical students will become “informed students”.
At the end of the session, the participants expressed a keen desire to start using MedSim in their colleges and to provide more feedback on the software. Many requested MedSim workshops at their institutes to help their medical students understand the technology for individual practice. Some doctors also wanted to monitor the progress made by their students after completing the MedSim virtual cases.